EGR shows successes and failures of European deregulation

7 December 2009

(PRESS RELEASE) -- The movement for E.U-led gambling deregulation moved forward this week as speakers at the recent EGR Conference and Awards in London hailed Italian deregulation as a success, showing that far more money could be raised through taxing commercial operators than through a state monopoly, citing the example of one of the current '3 sisters' monopolies (the SNAI), which had been known to be operating with a massive level of debt and now looks likely to be the subject of a buyout. France's new legislation, on the other hand, was denounced as a poor effort, with the continued exclusion of betting exchanges and high taxation on foreign operators likely to leave the industry only slightly better off in the country, where final decisions on the new laws have been pushed back until the summer.

Across the pond, one of the biggest critics of online gambling suddenly announced it was to effectively 'switch sides', when the largest land based casino operator in America, Harrah's Entertainment, revealed it would be introducing an online version of one of the world's most well known casino brands: the Caesers Palace Casino. This move is expected to be followed by their competitors, and the likelihood is that the Senators representing the areas these casinos cover will reduce their opposition to online gambling, once seen as a competing force for the dollars spent in Las Vegas or Atlantic City.

Back in Europe, meanwhile, recent weeks have seen the curious case of the gambling grannies in Cyprus, a story which shows the absurdity of current gambling regulations better than even we could have hoped for. A regular meeting of forty or so elderly ladies in the city of Limassol was subject to a raid by armed police. The total confiscated haul was reported to consist of less than a hundred Euros and a handful of poker chips, but the result was made clear to the ladies upon their release; no alternative to the State monopoly will be tolerated, not even a group of elderly women playing poker and gin rummy!

Meanwhile, on the Right2bet site, the Betting Challenge continues, with Juve's 2-1 win over Inter in Serie A adding to the charity kitty. The site also offers the chance to e-mail your M.E.P directly, as well as sign the all important Right2bet petition. Check it out at!

Related Links
EGR Live 2009
EGR Operator Awards Gala 2009